I’ll admit it. I’ve joined the Disney dark side. What started as a passing interest is becoming a full blown obsession. I’m going to be the coolest mom when my son is in elementary school and in all likelihood the most embarrassing by the time he hits middle school.

I’m pinning Disney vacation tips. When I told the husband that we were going to Disneyland for my birthday next year, he asked if we could wait until Avery was older and could appreciate it more. Silly man. As if we’re going to Disneyland only once.

I find myself on the Disney Store website weekly. Don’t worry though, I only buy things when they’re on sale.

animal!Check out my sweet Muppet mug!

My son is steadily gaining a nice collection of Disney onesies.

A tigger's a wonderful thingSadly, he has already outgrown this one.

And I’ve joined the Disney Movie Club. That’s right. The Disney Movie Club. That mail-order auto-ship must purchase so many movies or else club. When I was a kid I wanted to join the Columbia House music club, but I was told it was just a scam to send you music you would never listen to and take your money. The DMC is nothing at all like that! Okay, sure. They’re there to take your money. But who doesn’t love Disney movies? (Don’t answer that.)

Here’s how it works: After you sign up, you are obligated to purchase 4 movies at full price at some point in the next 24 months. Every month or so (they say up to 13 times a year) they send you a mailer (hard copy in the post as well as digitally in your inbox) with their “Featured Title.” Accept or decline, it’s up to you. These featured titles can be a single movie or double/triple features, and when they come bundled the price is (near as I can tell so far) around the same price as a single movie.

My first month after signing up the featured title was some Tinkerbell pirate fairy movie, which I had absolutely no interest in. I would’ve snatched up last month’s offer if I didn’t already own one of the titles in the triple feature (Muppet Treasure Island/The Great Muppet Caper/The Muppets). This month I couldn’t say no to a pre-order double feature of Hercules and Tarzan. I had the option to turn it into a triple feature (Frozen or Jungle Book) for $10-15 more, but I’m trying to keep my purchases to only a couple of movies at a time until I fulfill my subscription commitment.

None of this sounds too amazing if you’re prone to shopping the sales at the big box stores and the like, until you factor in the sign-up deal. It ranges a bit, but this is what I got: 5 Bluray for 99 cents with free shipping. Choose a 6th title for $11.95 and it counts toward your purchase commitment (knocking it down from 4 to 3, at less than half the cost of a full price title). Choose a 7th for $8.95. All told I got this haul for a total of $21.90:

Toy Story, Wreck-It Ralph, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Wall-E, Up, Peter Pan, The IncreadiblesThe collection begins

Add in my most recent purchase of Hercules and Tarzan for $34.95, so far I have gotten 9 movies for $56.85. That’s $6.32 a Bluray. (MATH!) Even if I just purchase my next two movies at full price I’m still at less than $11 a movie. But since they also run monthly deals of 30-50% off every additional movie once you’ve ordered one at full price, I’m not likely to stop there. Plus, they have the Marvel titles available!

When I was doing my research into this whole deal, I did find a few complaints peppered in with the praise.

  • Sometimes they send the featured title even when you’ve declined.
  • Their shipping can be spotty, and if you want a movie on release day it may not be the most wise choice to pre-order through the DMC.** (This may only apply to Canadians.)
  • Sometimes their call center is swamped.
  • Ordering over the phone can be difficult.
  • Old people have trouble with the internet (this explains most complaints).

**I have as of yet had no problem with shipping. Everything I’ve ordered (albeit I’ve only had two shipments) has arrived on time or early. In fact my preorder for Hercules/Tarzan arrived today, one day before the release date! (I am not Canadian.)

Herc/TarzanPreorder FTW!

I hear tell of bonuses for gaining VIP status (maintaining your membership after completing your commitment) in the form of collectables and special deals. I’ll keep y’all updated once I’ve gotten there. I don’t expect it to take me long.

This is beginning to sound like a full on sales pitch which was not at all my intent when I sat down to write this. Really, I am just very pleased so far with my decision to join. I wanted to share what I’ve found to be a great way to rather quickly and affordably build a decent Disney Bluray library. I’m thinking of Avery’s future, and his super awesome Disney-themed childhood. (No these are not for me. Certainly not. That’s an absurd claim.) I won’t bore you with the wonders of combining a DMC membership with the Disney Movie Rewards (free things!), but if anyone wants to hear more please talk to me! If you think you want to join me in this crazy quest to build the best Disney movie collection of all time, let me know so I can refer you. (Referral bonuses!)

Anyway… Check out this cute crib set.

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I made it three posts before abandoning this blog. Maybe I’ll make it to four this time?

Common knowledge for all who know me: I’m a baker. It’s what I do. I spent 4 months (and ten thousand dollars) at the Oregon Culinary Institute to get a silly little piece of paper stating this fact. Thanks to this ruddy economy, it took me over 6 months to find a job using my skills, but find it I did. However, this post is not about my job. It’s about the lovely bagels I made this morning. One of my favorite baking blogs is over at Wildyeastblog.com.  Susan re-posted her bagel recipe recently, and I was overcome with the need for bagels. My local grocery store only carries the doughnut bread she mentioned, so off I was to put my sourdough starter into submission.

I’m not going to cut and paste her recipe, just go to her blog and check it out. Some notes regarding mine:

I’m rather sure my starter isn’t actually 100% hydration. I’d say it’s more like, 75% probably tops. I never really adjust anything in recipes for this, I just take it as it goes and see if it causes it any problems. Generally, I can’t tell any difference.

I have cement countertops. I love them, but what I don’t love about them is the little holes of imperfection. Crud gets jammed in there and it’s just about impossible to clean properly. While making the recommended turns by hand, I found a way to clean those holes. Bagel dough! It was actually really gross what my dough pulled up when I wasn’t paying attention. After removing the crud from my dough, I did the remainder of my turns and shaping on my wood cutting b0ard.

Perhaps my oven runs hot, as my bagels were done in 15 minutes. Any more, and they would be less golden and more cajun. I also think that they probably could’ve used a bit more time proofing, they cracked a bit in baking.

Working from 11:20pm-12:20pm and 11:00am-12:00pm is totally worth it for these bagels. They are delicious and just the right amount of chewy. They go great with my raspberry cream cheese. Yum, yum!

(Yes, that right. I made salt and pepper bagels. Jealous?)

As anyone who has known me for any length of time will tell you, I have a short attention span. With regard to projects, at any rate. This blog is a sort of experiment, testing how long I can stay focused on one thing and document my various adventures.  This post is day one. I won’t be updating daily, weekly, or on any other predictable schedule. Random, just the way I like it.

Recently I stumbled upon Ravelry, and have since restarted my knitting obsession. This obsession comes in waves, where I will begin a project and love doing it for a week, then set it down and not look at it for 6 months. I started a new hat last January. I finished it last week, all thanks to my discovery of Ravelry. Yesterday I started a sweater. I’ve never made a sweater before. I am terrified at the prospect of frogging anything. Ever. I think I’m off to a good start.

Sweater beginnings This sweater is will be a basic top-down raglan sweater, assuming all goes well. I’m using a basic stockinette stitch the whole way down, and because the pattern I’m using is more of a guideline, I didn’t realize I should do something else for the collar until I was halfway done with it. (Insert fear of frogging here.) The yarn (a very nice wool blend) was purchased at an awesome 60% discount at the Yarn Garden 10th anniversary sale. Less than $30 for enough yarn to finish a sweater. Unheard of!

I hope to finish this by my birthday. Welcome to the Sara finishes a project within a month experiment.

I have found myself completely dissatisfied by my theme choices on wordpress.